NFL news of November 29, 2002

Hey, what did you expect if they were going to dress Tom Brady up in Matt Cavanaugh‘s old jersey?

Yesterday was Brady’s 29th professional start, but his first in the old red uniform the Patriots wore as a concession to the NFL, or more appropriately, NFLProperties, which will doubtless be flogging them at concession stands next week.

Brady is far too young to remember, but longtime New England sufferers could have told him that the act of putting on the white helmet with the old Pat Patriot logo is an exercise not without its attendant baggage.

Cavanaugh, who wore the red No. 12 jersey Brady modeled at Ford Field yesterday, is recalled as an adequate if unspectacular journeyman, and both “adequate” and “unspectacular” might characterize Brady’s performance yesterday.

For the second time in three weeks, the league leader in touchdown passes was blanked in that department. He threw one interception, and his quarterback rating for the day was a modest 67.4, but the important number was the one on the scoreboard. With yesterday’s 20-12 victory in Detroit’s traditional Thanksgiving Day game, the Pats got out of town with their seventh win of the season. As of this morning, no AFC team has more.

— George Kimball, The Boston Herald “Brady dressed to win”

Twelve of the AFC’s 14 teams finished with 8 wins or more. Three 9-7 AFC teams—the Patriots, Dolphins and Broncos—missed the playoffs.

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